Has anyone ever unfollowed you on Instagram for posting too many Bible verses? Does someone avoid you because of your relentless invitations to church?
It stings a little, and it can be a bit discouraging.
But it’s to be expected, isn’t it? After all, in 2 Timothy 3:12 the Apostle Paul warned us about this. Dedicating yourself to following Jesus is a radically different lifestyle, so we should be ready to encounter persecution, right?
The thing is, that isn’t what Paul meant when he talked about persecution. At least, that’s not all of it.
Right now, all around the world, there are Christians who experience all manners of persecution because of their faith. Loving Jesus may cause them to lose jobs or relationships. Their family may be threatened, and they may face torture or even death. For us, it can be overwhelming to consider what life is like for these people who follow Jesus even at great personal cost. We’re left to wonder how we could possibly do anything to help them.
What can we do? One simple but effective action we can all take is to pray. There is power in prayer, and we are called to lift up our fellow Christians. In fact, in Ephesians 6:18, Paul encouraged us to “stay alert and be persistent in your prayers for all believers everywhere.”
Will you join me? Here are a few points of prayer for our fellow believers facing persecution.
- Thank God for the believers around the world who are standing up for their faith.
- Pray that He strengthens their faith by His Holy Spirit and helps them grow in spiritual maturity.
- Ask God to give them wisdom to know how to share the Gospel, and with whom, and give them courage to share it fearlessly.
- Pray for Him to connect each one in community with other believers so that they can support and encourage one another.
- Pray that He protects them and provides for their physical, emotional, and material needs.
When we get to Heaven, we will be blessed and humbled to hear the stories of those believers who have experienced such difficult persecution. By praying for them now, we can be part of their eternal stories.